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Nice Work If You Can Get It: Life and Labor in Precarious Times (Nyu Series in Social and Cultural Analysis) [Kindle Edition]

Andrew Ross

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"Economic liberalization, [Ross] demonstrates, has opened up a frenetic global traffic in jobs and migrants, uprooting people in a manner both useful and troubling to the managers of capital. In short, more people are available to exploit, but they are also harder to control... A thorough and thoughtful study of global professional insecurity." The Times Literary Supplement "With admirable timing, [Ross] examines a global workplace infrastructure that's as shaky as the economy would indicate... Though far from uplifting, this is a bold, pointed look at reality as it is, a far more valuable commodity." Publishers Weekly, Starred Review "According to Ross, job insecurity became commonplace long before the current financial debacle. As economies shifted from industry to information, the benefits and securities of the Keynesian era quietly gave way to a workforce of temps, freelancers, adjuncts, and migrants. Ross finds that city fathers are more interested in Olympic bids and stadium projects than in sustainable employment, while corporations spend more on 'social responsibility' public-relations campaigns than on addressing worker complaints, and activists are too focussed on narrow concerns to find common cause with natural allies." The New Yorker "Illuminating... Who knows what will be on the table when the damage of the global crisis is told? At the very least, one may hope for a return to security, sensible financial regulation, and a renewed interest in economic equity. Other worlds are possible, and with luck thinkers like Ross can point the way to imagining them more fully." BookForum "...whereas for Euro-Americans the path is from Keynesian consensus to its unravelling by the savagery of neoliberal capitalism. Ross is one of those keen to point out that now, with historical hindsight, the Keynesian moment where state security (in the form of public pensions, education and so on) offsets the wilder excesses of capital increasingly looks like a historical blip. But he points out that not only did the temporary Fordist truce rely on imperialism, rigid social hierarchies and a reservoir of unpaid domestic labour, but that today is no simple neo-Victorian age: pre- and post-Fordist moments are qualitatively different. For whereas the Great Depression was the result of a collapse of capitalist control, contemporary precarity is the result of capitalist control, as organizations have eagerly embraced the flexploitation of short-term contracts and outsourcing as the new template for work ... As we are encouraged to be entrepreneurial subjects scrabbling over each other for success in a so-called 'meritocracy'." - Radical Philosophy, November 2010 "This excellent and, in places, brilliant book should be read by anyone interested in a timely and astute analysis of the malaise of life and work in neoliberal postmodern society... Highly recommended." Choice


2009 Choice Outstanding Academic Title

Is job insecurity the new norm? With fewer and fewer people working in steady, long-term positions for one employer, has the dream of a secure job with full benefits and a decent salary become just that—a dream?

In Nice Work If You Can Get It, Andrew Ross surveys the new topography of the global workplace and finds an emerging pattern of labor instability and uneven development on a massive scale. Combining detailed case studies with lucid analysis and graphic prose, he looks at what the new landscape of contingent employment means for workers across national, class, and racial lines—from the emerging “creative class” of high-wage professionals to the multitudes of temporary, migrant, or low-wage workers. Developing the idea of “precarious livelihoods” to describe this new world of work and life, Ross explores what it means in developed nations—comparing the creative industry policies of the United States, United Kingdom, and European Union, as well as developing countries—by examining the quickfire transformation of China's labor market. He also responds to the challenge of sustainability, assessing the promise of “green jobs” through restorative alliances between labor advocates and environmentalists.

Ross argues that regardless of one's views on labor rights, globalization, and quality of life, this new precarious and “indefinite life,&” and the pitfalls and opportunities that accompany it is likely here to stay and must be addressed in a systematic way. A more equitable kind of knowledge society emerges in these pages—less skewed toward flexploitation and the speculative beneficiaries of intellectual property, and more in tune with ideals and practices that are fair, just, and renewable.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 558 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 273 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 0814776299
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B002BU24VK
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Nicht aktiviert
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #479.125 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.7 von 5 Sternen  3 Rezensionen
3 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Interesting book, very poor kindle execution 5. August 2012
Von Zora Hurston - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I would give the text four stars, but Kindle did such a poor job with it that I cannot recommend buying it in electronic form - I would give Amazon a negative 2 stars - they should give a refund or update it with a better product - for free. It is impossible to navigate or look up text, there is no table of content or page numbers and thus even though one might want to use it in scholarly writing (or just recommend passages to friends) - you cannot. Amazon is truly doing the author a disservice - which is a shame because there are some very interesting ideas here and a great deal of information.

Basically this book is about how dramatically work has changed for all of us, including some of the most privleged, such as academics (bias alert - I am an academic). It is not a happy story, but it does seem to be on to something in discussing just how contingent work has become and how we have been fooled (I would say) into accepting it - indeed in thinking it is glamorous and liberating. Perhaps it is for a few, but insecurity is not really so wonderful, is it? I thought the chapters on the globalization of education were especially interesting and informative. If we will not let foreign students come here - guess we will have to go to them and it seems we are doing just that - in droves. Add to that online education and yet one other sector is disappearing and being outsourced.

Truly interesting and stuff you are not likely to find elsewhere. Also kind of academic, but approachable. I liked the book itself a lot, but Amazon needs to get its act together and not put out such poorly executed products.
0 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The product was exceptional clean and new. The material ... 28. Dezember 2014
Von Jenny Free - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
The product was exceptional clean and new. The material itself was intriguing - at least for me; it showed me what economists don't care or don't tal about when they talk about copyrights and international trade expansion. Although sometimes tainted with conspiracy theory, the majority of the time, I believe Ross did a fair job of advocating for a worldview that he values.
0 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Four Stars 2. November 2014
Von Terri Horne - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Informative and right on point for my class.
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